The Evolving Strategic Landscape: Challenges And Opportunities In A Time Of Transition – OpEd


In 2024 the world is expected to face geopolitical and strategic challenges diverge that significantly from those experienced in 2016. Projections indicate that the United States will emerge as the leading oil producer in the Western Hemisphere by that time with North America as a whole predicted to become a net exporter of oil natural and gas around 2025, as reported the by U.S. Energy Information Administration. 

Against of the backdrop changing these dynamics nations are reevaluating their roles forging new alliances, and cultivating rivalries. Through collaboration among experts from diverse sectors including government consultancies industry academia and the military, this annual edition of the Global Strategic Trends report seeks to examine the evolving strategic landscape over a 15-year timeframe in 2035. It seeks to explore the influence of social and technological trends on the global environment identify potential disruptions and underscore the strategic decisions necessary to equip the United Kingdom and its allies to confront challenges and opportunities to seize the future. 

A  prominent aspect of the global geopolitical panorama is the competition between the United States and China. These two countries engage in rivalries trade encompassing technology military power and Indo-regional Pacific influence. Driven by realist perspectives both sides have increasingly adopted an adversarial relationship. Notably, former President Trump at that time implemented tariffs on a considerable sum of Chinese goods to exert pressure for change in China’s practices resulting in an overall reduction of US tariffs by $7. 7 billion. 

Nonetheless, tension in trade persists and the situation may further escalate. Moreover, intense rivalry characterizes the technology sector as both countries vie for dominance in areas such as artificial intelligence and other emerging technologies. This competition implication for theUnited States with China and the global economy among the uneasy Asian allies of the United States sparked an influence on the security of the United and States its uncertain European allies. Simultaneously the Ukraine conflict has heightened tensions between Russia and NATO, prompting Europe to confront its vulnerability in the century 21st. It serves as a stark reminder that regional conflicts can swiftly escalate into all-war out.

The outcome of this conflict and the trajectory of Russia’s relationship with NATO will have extensive repercussions for the continent as a whole. Contributing further to the present atmosphere uncertainty of is the “election supercycle” of 2024 during which more than 70 countries are set to hold elections. This influx of new leadership potentially augments the risk of cooperation international faltering. Notably a substantial change in leadership particularly within a pivotal country like the United States holds the potential to significantly impact the current global trajectory. 

Another set of issues that extend beyond state boundaries is the geo-strategic challenges that necessitate solutions collective. The advent of artificial intelligence (AI) had has a profound impact on the global economy and world politics. However, it has also emerged as a new arena of conflict among nations as they focus on developing AI-based systems for conventional weaponry. This raises concerns regarding misuse and the ethical implications surrounding future AI weapon systems. Moreover, the oceans have unexpectedly become a crucial geopolitical concern as they witness competition for untapped resources and control over maritime routes. The shifting climate and its consequences for marine life could further lead to conflicts related to sustainable development. Thus, the management of oceans a as shared resource warrants international consensus. 

Additionally, numerous humanitarian and ethical challenges confront the world. Climate change poses a significant threat with diverse implications for resources population displacement and global security. The incidence of cyberattacks particularly targeting critical infrastructure and national security, is on the rise. Energy security a remains persistent challenge with countries endeavoring to diversify their energy sources and lessen reliance on a single provider in the aftermath of the Ukraine war. Finally, the COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare vulnerabilities in global supply chains’ economic and interdependence. While these factors may shape divergent future scenarios is imperative to maintain an optimistic outlook. Through international cooperation, we can find solutions to mitigate the posed dangers by issues such as climate change management ocean, and cybersecurity. Building trust averting and conflicts among major powers can be achieved through open channels of communication, efforts, and discretion. Critically addressing the multifaceted geopolitical and strategic issues of the century 21st necessitates employing a range of approaches. These approaches involve prioritizing diplomacy international cooperation, investment economic in cyber defense, innovation technology, and capabilities in intelligence.  Furthermore, it requires reaffirming rules and a-based international order that is firmly in grounded shared norms and values to effectively tackle the wide array of global challenges we confront today. 

In conclusion, for  2024 we will undoubtedly encounter a world characterized by continual transitions. While persistent concerns endure both new and old issues will emerge bearing the enduring consequences of past conflicts. Finally, comprehending the increasingly intricate geopolitical and strategic issues of our time is of utmost importance.

The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own.


Simon Hutagalung

Simon Hutagalung is a retired diplomat from the Indonesian Foreign Ministry and received his master's degree in political science and comparative politics from the City University of New York. The opinions expressed in his articles are his own.

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